Slice (disk) - PC Partition Types

PC Partition Types

This section describes the master boot record (MBR) partitioning scheme, as used in DOS, Microsoft Windows and Linux among others on PC compatible computer systems. For examples of partitioning schemes used in other operating systems, see the general article on partition tables.

The total data storage space of a PC hard disk can be divided into at most four primary partitions, or alternatively three primary partitions and an extended partition. These partitions are described by 16-byte entries that constitute the Partition Table, located in the master boot record.

The partition type is identified by a 1-byte code found in its partition table entry. Some of these codes (such as 0x05 and 0x0F) may be used to indicate the presence of an extended partition. Most are used by an operating system's bootloader (that examines partition tables) to decide if a partition contains a file system that can be used to mount / access for reading or writing data.

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